FXstreet.com (San Francisco) - Optimism over the U.S. budget talks is fading somewhat as market participants digest downbeat statements from House Speaker John Boehner on the ongoing fiscal cliff negotiations. In a news conference Thursday, Boehner said that “No substantive progress” had been made over the last two weeks in the negotiations between the Obama White House and the House GOP leadership.

US Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner is spearheading the Democratic effort, and yesterday, Speaker Boehner said his meeting with Geithner was “frank” and “direct,” but he said he came away disappointed that Democrats "have yet to get serious about real spending cuts," despite President Obama saying that his administration supports a “balanced approach.”

Tight ranges in FX are seen in early Asian trade so far, with Japan's Nikkei Average reported to have opened up 0.5% at 9,446.77. Reuters is now reporting that foreign brokers are set to buy 1.1 million in Japanese stocks.